Niagara County has been awarded almost $2 million by the federal government to purchase new portable radios for every fire department in the county.
The grant was awarded through the Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant program. The county will use the funds to purchase "P-25 compliant" portable radios that can function in both analog and digital modes, are programmable and scalable and have the ability to communicate with existing equipment. According to the county legislature's public information office, the portable radios will also have the ability to program all federal interoperable channels and talk groups.
“Radios are as important to our firefighters as good protective clothing when it comes to entering a burning building to put out a fire or more importantly to save a life,” observed county legislator David Godfrey, R-Wilson, chairman of the legislature's community safety and security committee. “The dangers when inside a raging inferno are no less than life-threatening and can happen without warning, possibly trapping the firefighter.”
The AFG program provides direct funding assistance to fire departments, state fire training academies, and non-affiliated EMS organizations to enhance their response capabilities.